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2014 Mensa award winners announced

American Mensa recognized some of its most deserving members during the Annual Gathering. Join us again in congratulating this year’s honorees.

(NOTE: Winning groups may download graphics for the Jewels Awards here and ACE Awards over here.)


Members who made special contributions to Mensa are recognized with for their dedication and service.

Robin Crawford recognized for her distinguished service.

  • Distinguished Service Award winners recognized for outstanding and dedicated volunteer service: Robin Crawford, Tony Jackowski, Jim Werdell and Mary Dwyer Wolfe
  • National Service Award winners recognized for contributing greatly to the growth and betterment of the organization: Sallie Banko, Charlie Bruce, Barbara Kryvko, Richard Lederer, Pat Merk and Allen Neuner
  • A Certificate of Appreciation is presented in gratitude for special contributions to the organization: Bob Bevard, Guy Conti, Carol Hilson, Mary Lee Kemper, Cyndi Kuyper, Mike Last, Barbara Lytle, Gerry Riley, Maria Sawczuk, Mike Seigler, Steve Slepner, Cat Sterrett, Maggie Truelove and Mike Tuchman


Longevity was the theme of Chair Dan Burg’s National Chairman’s Service Awards, which recognized long-serving local group officers.
  • Larry Brandt (Central Iowa Mensa)
  • TJ Lundeen (Central Oklahoma Mensa)
  • Vaughan Parker (Channel Islands Mensa)
  • Stacey Kirsch, John Muellner, Bill Slankard, and Allison Stallings Reeves (Chicago Area Mensa)
  • De Freshwater, David Michel (Cleveland Area Mensa)
  • Dick Nuenke (Columbus Area Mensa)
  • David Felt (Greater Los Angeles Area Mensa)
  • Clotilde Cepeda and Martin Merado (Greater New York Mensa)
  • Gary Maycroft and S. Gail Skvarenina (Greater Phoenix Mensa)
  • Sallie Banko (Lehigh-Pocono Mensa)
  • Ed Ledger (Mensa of Western Washington)
  • Roy Saper (Mid-Michigan Mensa)
  • Martha Feld Williams (North Alabama Mensa)
  • Karen Brack and Randy Brack (North Texas Mensa)
  • David Lubman, Angie Mattson, and John Olsen (Orange County Mensa)
  • W. Brewster Gillett, Diana Maul, and Scott Rainey (Oregon Mensa)
  • Mike Craddock, Dennis Hein, and Lynne Killgore (Permian Basin Mensa)
  • Mary Ann Cox (Piedmont Area Mensa)
  • Barbara Kryvko (St. Louis Area Mensa)
  • Dave Bowles and Bob Tutelman (San Diego Mensa)
  • Elna Tymes (San Francisco Regional Mensa)
  • Paul Sommerville (Savannah Area Mensa)
  • Bob Strauch, James Draper, Lynne Draper and Jerry Breuer (Southeast Michigan Mensa)
  • Sylvia Holt Zadorozny (Tampa Bay Mensa)
  • Donna Bonzagni (Thomas Jefferson Mensa)
  • Didi Pancake (Thomas Jefferson Mensa)


The Proctor of the Year awards were established in 2000 and are known as the Abbie, in honor and recognition of Dr. Abbie Salny’s years of service as American Mensa’s Supervisory Psychologist. The awards are given to members who are ambassadors of Mensa, make test sessions enjoyable, test regularly, show originality, and are conscientious Proctors.
Class I
  • Elizabeth W. Meadows (Gulf Coast Mensa)
  • David D. Felt (Greater Los Angeles Area Mensa)
Class II
  • Daniel Jonathon Phillips (San Francisco Regional Mensa)
  • VeraLouise Pfeiffer (Denver Mensa)
  • Martha A. McKeon (Central New Jersey Mensa)
Class III
  • Sandy Lynn Halby (Plains and Peaks Mensa)
  • Baker D. Ring (Middle Tennessee Mensa)
Class IV
  • John R. Pfeiffer (Boulder/Front Range Mensa)
  • Annemarie Barefoot McTaggart MPA (Northern Nevada Mensa)
The Testing Coordinator of the Year awards are awarded annually to outstanding Testing Coordinators. Known as the Dave Felt Award, the honor is given to the Testing Coordinators who help encourage new Proctors, find test sites, and show originality in advertising and promoting testing.
Class I
  • Elisa Kaplan Miller (North Texas Mensa)
Class II
  • Rhonda R. Johnston (Mid-America Mensa)
  • Angela Joyce Mattson (Orange County Mensa)
Class III
  • Baker D. Ring (Middle Tennessee Mensa)
Class IV
  • Nicole R. Bissonnette (Maine Mensa)


This year’s winner was Tragic Kingdom - Central Florida Mensa. The Next Generation winner was the Heschel Velociraptors from Greater New York Mensa. (See the full list of winners.)

Local Group Jewels presentation


The Local Group Jewels recognize participation in Mensa activities and accomplishments, including Mind Games®, CultureQuest®, Mensa Testing Day, and Leadership Development Workshops. Achievement levels are, lowest to highest: Emerald, Sapphire, and Ruby.
Class V (fewer than 100 members)
  • Diamond: North Dakota Mensa
  • Sapphire: North Dakota Mensa and Monterey County Mensa
  • Emerald: Borderline Mensa, South Coast Mensa, Northern Michigan Mensa, High Mountain Mensa, Fort Wayne Mensa, South Dakota Mensa, Wyoming Mountain Mensa, Sangamon Valley Mensa, Columbia River Mensa, Northern Louisiana Mensa and Maumee Valley Mensa
Class IV (100 to 199 members)
  • Diamond: Northwest Florida Mensa
  • Sapphire: Heart of Illinois Mensa, Mensa Alaska and Northwest Florida Mensa
  • Emerald: Boulder/Front Range Mensa. Chattanooga Mensa. Maine Mensa, Blue Grass Mensa, Mensa of the Southern Tier of NY, Permian Basin Mensa, Sunflower Mensa, Central New York Mensa, Paso del Norte Mensa, Mid-Michigan Mensa, Iowa-Illinois Mensa. Savannah Area Mensa of Georgia, Triad Mensa, Delaware Mensa, Central South Carolina Mensa, Southwest Idaho Mensa, French Broad Mensa, Coastal Carolina Mensa, Missouri Ozarks Mensa, Vermont Mensa, Redwood Empire Mensa, Mississippi Mensa, Eastern Washington/Northern Idaho and Mid-Hudson Mensa
Class III (200 to 399 members)
  • Diamond: Memphis Mensa
  • Ruby: Memphis Mensa
  • Sapphire: Charlotte-Blue Ridge Mensa, East Central Ohio Mensa, Eastern Oklahoma Mensa, Lehigh-Pocono Mensa, Middle Tennessee Mensa, Nebraska-Western Iowa Mensa, Northern Nevada Mensa, Piedmont Area Mensa and Tucson Mensa
  • Emerald: Dayton Area Mensa, Mensa Hawaii, Mensa of Northeastern New York, Utah Mensa, Mensa of Jacksonville, Central Oklahoma Mensa, Southern Connecticut Mensa, Plains and Peaks Mensa, Tidewater Mensa, Western New York Mensa, Central Iowa Mensa, Western Michigan Mensa, Southern Nevada Mensa, Richmond Area Mensa, Channel Islands Mensa, North Alabama Mensa, Miami Mensa, Southwest by South Florida Mensa, Space Coast Area Mensa, New Hampshire/Maine Mensa, Eastern Oklahoma Mensa, Rhode Island Mensa, Manasota Mensa, New Mexico Mensa and New Orleans Mensa
Class II (400 to 899 members)
  • Diamond: Orange County Mensa
  • Ruby: Orange County Mensa
  • Sapphire: Central Florida Mensa, Central Indiana Mensa, Western Pennsylvania Mensa and Mensa of Wisconsin
  • Emerald: Denver Mensa, Central New Jersey Mensa, Mid-America Mensa, Mensa 76, Lonestar Mensa, San Antonio Mensa, Mensa of Eastern North Carolina, Cincinnati Area Mensa, Broward Mensa, Palm Beach County Mensa, Oregon Mensa, Columbus Area Mensa, Northern New Jersey Mensa, St Louis Area Mensa, Connecticut/Western Massachusetts, Tampa Bay Mensa, Central Pennsylvania Mensa, Sacramento Regional Mensa and Cleveland Area Mensa
Class I (900+ members)
  • Diamond: Chicago Area Mensa
  • Ruby: Chicago Area Mensa
  • Sapphire: Boston Mensa, Greater Los Angeles Area Mensa, Gulf Coast Mensa, Mensa of Western Washington, Minnesota Mensa, North Texas Mensa, San Diego Mensa, San Francisco Regional Mensa and Southeast Michigan Mensa
  • Emerald: Greater New York Mensa, Metropolitan Washington Mensa, Greater Phoenix Mensa, Delaware Valley Mensa and Mensa In Georgia
(Winning groups may download graphics for the Jewels Awards here.)


Membership is the key to the viability and success of Mensa. The organization created two awards, the Prolific and Innovative Owls, to show gratitude to those groups that foster growth and retention, respectively. The winners:
  • Prolific Owl (Outstanding Membership Growth): Chattanooga Mensa, which saw a 25 percent increase. Honorable Mentions: Channel Islands Mensa, Triad Mensa
  • Innovative Owl (Outstanding Membership Retention): Sangamon Valley Mensa, which retained 92.8 percent of its membership. Honorable Mentions: Channel Islands Mensa, Heart of Illinois Mensa


The Achieving Communications Excellence Award recognizes Local Groups that meet or exceed communications standards in newsletters, websites, and social media.
  • ACE Awards Gold Medal Winners: Lehigh-Pocono Mensa, Memphis Mensa, and Orange County Mensa
  • ACE Awards Silver Medal Winners: Charlotte-Blue Ridge Mensa, Gulf Coast Mensa, Mensa of Western Washington, Northwest Florida Mensa, and Tucson Mensa
(Winning groups may download graphics for the ACE Awards here.)


Given for superior service as a Gifted Youth Coordinator and contributing to the growth of programs or services for gifted youth and/or Young Mensans.
  • Winner: Eric Szczerbinski (Richmond Area Mensa)

Dave Felt presents David Smith with the ICBA


Mensa Foundation awards honor the research and support of intelligence.
  • Laura Joyner Award – Dr. Jessica Reyes (Boston Mensa) for her accomplishments and work in preventing lead poisoning among children.
  • Intellectual Benefits to Society Award – Rhoda Erhardt (Minnesota Mensa) for developing a program on early childhood identification of disabilities.
  • International Intellectual Benefits to Society Award – David Smith (Mensa Canada) for developing program on electrical safety training.
  • Copper Black Award for Creative Achievement – Fred Katz’s (Greater New York Mensa) achievement was in the area of home security, addressing the problem of a motion sensor’s ability to discriminate between a home intruder and a wandering pet.
  • International Copper Black Award for Creative Achievement – David Smith (Mensa Canada) again recognized for providing practical electrical safety risk management skills for electrical workers.
  • Distinguished Teacher Award – Andrea Mystrena (Central New Jersey Mensa).